Education and Income: the correlation is sadly flattening.

“In 2001, according to the Employment Policy Institute, a liberal think tank in Washing, workers with undergraduate degrees (but not graduate degrees) earned, on average, $20.05 an hour; last year they earned $29.55 an hour” (1)

“In 2007, 5.5 per cent of college graduates under the age of twenty-five were out of work. Today the figure is close too nine percent” (1)

“while college graduates are still doing a lot better than non graduates, some studies have show the earnings gap has stopped growing…   . ..But almost all the recent gains have gone to folks with graduate degrees… and one of the main reasons the gap (between the wages of employees with or without a degree) went up… was that the earnings of non-graduates was falling. ” (1)

Graduates who attended M.I.T., Caltech, and Harvey Mudd College get a 10% return on their investment in a college education.  But a survey by Payscale in 2012 found almost 200 colleges where students NEVER FULLY earned a return that even covered the costs of their college education.  WHERE you graduate from matters!  The payoff in 25% of colleges is actually negative! (2)

Part of the reason that many college graduates never earn enough from their degree to pay for it is because so many high school grads now continue to college.  “About seventy per cent of all high school graduates now go on to college, and half of all Americans between the ages of twenty-five and thirty-four have a college degree.” (1)

(1) College Calculus, by John Cassidy in The New Yorker, Sept 7 2015. p 80.

(2) BusinessWeek, 2012.